Duntroon teenager Isabelle Keeling has been awarded this year’s $2000 North Otago Federated Farmers-ANZ rural tertiary scholarship.
Six candidates – all female – were vying for the honour. They were interviewed by a panel comprising North Otago Federated Farmers meat and wool chairman Greg Ruddenklau, ANZ agri-relationships manager Kirsty Stratton, and Young Farmers Aorangi territory manager Bridget Huddleston.
Isabelle (17) is in year 13 at Columba College in Dunedin, where she has boarded since year 8. She said the interview for the scholarship was a good excuse to go home for the weekend.
Isabelle has taken agribusiness and biology as school subjects for the past two years and plans to head to Lincoln University next year to study for a bachelor of agribusiness and food marketing degree.
“My future job may not exist yet,” she said.
She hopes to get accommodation in one of the Lincoln halls of residence but that would not be confirmed until her NCEA Level 3 results were available at the beginning of next year. Her aim was to achieve an excellence endorsement.
The scholarship money would go towards accommodation costs.
Isabelle was keen to avoid taking out a student loan. She has already secured work as a relief milker after the school year ends, and there were prospects of returning to Waitaki Orchard near Kurow again after being employed there last summer.
Having grown up on a dairy farm, Isabelle appreciated gaining experience in another form of primary industry.
Meanwhile, she has been busy in rehearsals this week for her school’s production of Fiddler on the Roof, which opened at the Mayfair Theatre on Wednesday night and finishes tonight.